One of the persistent claims by the government is that the National Identity Register and ID card will make us more secure from the threat of identity theft. There's no doubt that identity theft is increasing and that identity-jackers are increasing in sophistication. However, what is still more concerning is how readily these impostors are able to use government owned data:
"How does a joined-up, centralised database threaten us more? One answer appears in the body of the Thomas report which shows that the security of databases ranging from health records, to the driver and vehicle licensing authority and the police national computer, which has 10,000 entry points, is regularly breached... Warrants obtained by Thomas resulted in the arrest of a private detective working from his home in Hampshire who had regular access to BT's phone records, the DVLA and police computer... Thomas's team realised how extensive was the market in unlawful personal data and how easy it is to steal from official records. Imagine a determined stalker gaining access to this proposed unified system and NIR."
Henry Porter, 28/05/06, the Guardian